Regulation

News

Temporary rates of customs duty on seafood imports after EU Exit

13 March 2019  |  Regulation

Last updated Thursday 24 October 2019

The UK government has announced the rates of customs duty (tariffs) that will apply to imports of goods into the UK if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.  The tariffs will be valid initially for 12 months. The government will be consulting on future permanent tariffs during this period. The new regime would affect only imports into the UK. 

The announcement lists 21 seafood commodity codes that will incur duty. These new tariffs mirror the tariffs that currently apply to seafood product imported into the EU, and range from 7.5% to 15% for unprocessed fish and are set at 24% for prepared or preserved tuna.

A large proportion of the seafood commodities that are imported into the UK are not listed in the government announcement and therefore will not incur a duty on import. These products include salmon, most whitefish (certain categories of monkfish, sea bass and bream will have a tariff), pelagic fish and bivalve molluscs. Among the zero-tariffed seafood commodities are those currently covered by the European Union autonomous tariff quotas.

The government announcement can be accessed through this link

The tariffs in the UK government announcement are:

Commodity Code

Seafood Product

Tariff Rate

Additional Information

03038910

Frozen freshwater fish, not elsewhere specified

8%

Excluding fish fillets and other fish meat of heading 0304

03038990

Frozen fish, not elsewhere specified

15%

Excluding fish fillets and other fish meat of heading 0304

03048910

Frozen fillets of freshwater fish, not elsewhere specified

9%

 

03048990

Frozen fish fillets, not elsewhere specified

15%

 

03049965

Frozen meat (whether or not minced) of Monkfish (Lophius spp)

7.5%

Excluding fillets

03061792

Frozen shrimps of the genus “Penaeus”

12%

Even smoked or whether in the shell of not - including shrimps in shell cooked by steaming or by boiling in water

03061799

Frozen shrimps and prawns (excluding “Pandalidae” “Crangon” deepwater rose shrimps “Parapenaeus longirostris” and “Penaeus”)

12%

Even smoked whether in the shell or not - including shrimps and prawns in the shell cooked by steaming or by boiling in water

03061990

Frozen crustaceans fit for human consumption (excluding rock lobster and other sea crawfish, lobsters, shrimps, prawns, crabs, freshwater crayfish and Norway lobsters “Nephrops norvegicus”)

12%

Even smoked, whether in the shell or not, including crustaceans in the shell cooked by steaming or by boiling in water

16041421

Prepared or preserved skipjack whole or in pieces in vegetable oil

24%

Excluding minced

16041426

Fillets known as “Loins” of skipjack prepared or preserved whole or in pieces

24%

Excluding such products in vegetable oil or minced

16041428

Prepared or preserved skipjack whole or in pieces

24%

Excluding minced fillets known as “loins” and such products in vegetable oil

16041431

Prepared or preserved yellowfin tuna “Thunnus albacares” whole or in pieces in vegetable oil

24%

Excluding minced

16041438

Prepared or preserved yellowfin tuna “Thunnus albacares” whole or in pieces

24%

Excluding minced fillets known as “loins” and such products in vegetable oil

16041441

Prepared or preserved tuna whole or in pieces in vegetable oil (excluding minced skipjack and yellowfin tuna “Thunnus albacares”)

24%

 

16041448

Prepared or preserved tuna whole or in pieces (excluding minced fillets known as “loins” and such products in vegetable oil skipjack and yellowfin tuna “Thunnus albacares”)

24%

 

0301919011,

Live trout of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

 

12%

Not ornamental, weighing 1.2kg or less each

0302118011

Trout, fresh or chilled, of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

12%

In the form of whole fish (with heads on), whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1.2 kg or less each; with heads off, whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1 kg or less each. Excluding fish fillets and other fish meat of heading 0304.

0303149011

Trout, frozen, of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

12%

In the form of whole fish (with heads on), whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1.2 kg or less each; with heads off, whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1 kg or less each. Excluding fish fillets and other fish meat of heading 0304.

0304429010

Fresh or chilled fillets of trout of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

12%

 

0304829010

Frozen fillets of trout of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

12%

 

0305430011

Smoked trout, including fillets, other than edible fish offal, of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss

14%

In the form of whole fish (with heads on), whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1.2 kg or less each; with heads off, whether or not gilled, whether or not gutted, weighing 1 kg or less each; fillets weighing 400 g or less each

 

Although there are only 21 seafood commodity codes on the new tariff list, the implications of these changes are potentially significant. Whereas previously the UK did not pay any duty on seafood products imported from the EU, in a no-deal situation UK importers will pay duty on the listed products if they are importing these products directly from the EU. These listed products already attract a tariff if they are imported directly from outside the EU and this will continue. Seafood products that are not on the list will continue to be imported with a tariff of zero. A summary can be found in the table below:

 

 Description

‘Current’ full tariff

‘No deal’ full tariff

Listed products imported from the EU

Zero

UK tariff

Unlisted products imported from the EU

Zero

Zero (no change)

Listed products imported from outside the EU

EU tariff

UK tariff (as this is equal to the EU tariff, there is no change)

Unlisted products imported from outside the EU

EU tariff

Zero

Preferential tariffs

Free trade agreements brokered by the UK government with a number of exporting countries allow imports from these countries to enter the EU at preferential tariff rates. There is information on the tariff rates applicable to seafood imported from the following countries:

  • Chile: a number of tariff lines that would otherwise command a tariff are zero tariffed. Seven tariff lines that cover prepared and prepared tuna will command a tariff.
  • Faroe Islands: a number of tariff lines that would otherwise command a tariff are zero tariffed.
  • Eastern and Southern Africa States (Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and Zimbabwe): all seafood will be zero tariffed. (Fishery products from Zimbabwe are not currently authorised for import.)
  • Preferential tariffs are listed for seafood from Israel, Palestine and Switzerland.

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the UK General Scheme of Preferences (GSP) will take effect. The UK GSP allows the UK to continue to provide trade preferences to the same countries as the EU’s GSP. You can check which countries are in the scheme by consulting this UK government guidance. You will still need to provide proof that goods originate from a GSP country by using FORM A. For up to 12 months after the date the UK leaves the EU, HMRC will allow GSP exporters to use the REX statement on origin as proof of origin. 

Quotas

The UK government has released a draft list of tariff quotas for imported products, including seafood. Where a tariff quota applies, it will be possible to import limited amounts of particular types of seafood at a lower rate of duty. The quotas are listed in the Tariff Rate Quota Document, available here

There is no further detail on the administration of the tariff quotas at the moment. 



Get the Latest Updates

Sign up for our Newsletters

Don't miss a moment